Top 7 Icelandic Traditional Food Items

Food items form a significant part of culture. Iceland is famous for its deep-seated traditional practices. Its food forms a major component of those practices. Some of their meals are significantly different from the food in other parts of the world.

1. Hakarl

Icelandic Traditional Food ItemsThis is a delicacy of fermented and dried shark. The meal is prepared by first of all by be-heading the shark. It is then stored in a hole dug in the sand and covered with stones. This facilitates the poisonous acids in the shark to seep out. During this period, the shark ferments. The fermented shark is cut into pieces, then hang out to dry until it is ready to be eaten.

2. Harofiskur

Icelandic Traditional Food ItemsThis is one of the Iceland favorite snacks. It is prepared by drying the fish. This was a traditional method of preserving meals dating from the ancient Viking culture. It is prepared by drying the fish in an aerated space. Once the fish is dry and yellow, place it is put on a wooden workbench. On the bench, it is crushed until it is white and soft. Once soft, it is eaten with some salt and butter as a snack.

3. Svio

Icelandic Traditional Food ItemsThis meal consists of a sheep’s head that is cut into two. It is prepared by boiling the head, removing the fur and the brain. The ears are removed as they contain the mark of the owner of the sheep. On the Svio meal, the eyes are considered to be the most delicious.

4. Hangikjot

Icelandic Traditional Food ItemsThis refers to meat that has been hung and smoked for preservation. The meat that was usually preserved this way was mutton, horse meat of lamb meat. Hangikijot is usually prepared by hanging the meat over the kitchen fire for many months. It is served raw but cut into slices. This meal is most popular during Christmas.

5. Saltfiskur

Icelandic Traditional Food ItemsThis fish delicacy used to be one most valuable fish export for the Iceland. The meal was traditionally prepared by drying the salt fish using the wind and the sun. It was placed on rocks or cliffs to dry. However, in recent times, electric heaters are used to dry the fish. The dried salt fish can be preserved for many months. To prepare a meal with the dried fish, the fish is soaked in water for 48 hours to soften it. One should also change the water after 24 hours to dilute the saltiness of the fish.

6. Cod Tongues

Icelandic Traditional Food ItemsThe cod tongues are triangular muscles on the side and under the tongue. They are also referred to as gellur. To prepare a cod tongue meal, one should soak the salt-fish tongue in water for 24 hours. If it is not a cod tongue of a salt-fish, it scrapped to remove the slime. Then boiled In water.

7. Slatur-Blood Pudding

Icelandic Traditional Food ItemsThis meal is made from the innards of a sheep. The ingredients are sheep’s blood, chopped fat, chopped onions, salt, sausage skin and pepper. The meal is commonly served with the sheep’s head or rice,


Most of these meals had a traditional recipe. However, in the present day, other modern recipes have come up. Today, the recipes are combined with other foods like potatoes to balance it and make it more appealing.

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